Quarantine Guidelines

Returning Residents

Quarantine is Mandatory

In accordance with the Ministry of Health guidelines all travellers arriving in Zimbabwe from outside the country will be required to undergo mandatory quarantine for a total of 21 days of which 8 must be served in a mandated government or approved private quarantine centre.

International travel has been a major source of Covid-19 spread. Quarantine is one measure our government is taking to
protect you and the citizens of Zimbabwe.

Testing is Mandatory

Travellers are required to have a rapid test at day one, a PCR test on day 8 and an additional test on day 21.

The government laboratories do provide this service to those in government centres. At ZINCAT, our doctors will facilitate your expedited
testing through a private lab that will be an additional and separate charge to your bill.

Our team will facilitate a final quarantine discharge letter that will be endorsed by MOH attesting to your satisfactory completion of
quarantine requirements.

WHAT IS QUARANTINE?

Quarantine means you are isolated from your friends,
colleagues and family for your protection and the health and
safety of our nation.

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  • You cannot leave the premises until you have completed
    your quarantine requirements mandated by law and
    signed off by our doctors
  • You cannot have visitors
  • You are confined to your room where you will receive your
    meals
  • You can go out on the verandah (in some locations you
    can walk in the garden)
  • No swimming in the pool
    You must practice social distancing at all times and wear
    a mask in public areas

On arrival – AIR

Passengers will clear routine immigration and baggage procedures as well as questionnaire and screening from MoH staff at the airport.You will then be transported to your designated quarantine centre by MoH transportation, often with a police escort for routine security.

If you have booked a private facility, be sure to let the ground staff know. You will need a letter from ZINCAT confirming your booking.

On arrival – Road

You will need to have a letter from ZINCAT confirming your private quarantine booking.

You will be escorted by the authorities to one of our private quarantine facilities after MoH screening and the immigration process.

> Click here for HOW TO BOOK WITH ZINCAT

  • If you are classified as high risk (diabetes, high blood pressure, HIV, etc) you should work from home.

  • If you can make sure you eat plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, this will help maintain a healthy immune system.

  • Clean your hands often. Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, clean your hands with an alcohol based hand sanitiser that contains at least 60% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry.

  • Wash your hands with warm soapy water as often as possible.

  • Avoid direct human contact, stand 2 steps (2meters) away and limit face-to-face conversations.

  • Avoid touching door handles, light switches, taps etc with your fingers, use your elbow or knuckles where possible.

  • Avoid touching your face.

  • Avoid shaking hands; instead use verbal forms of greeting.

  • If you need to cough or sneeze either do so into a tissue which you should dispose of immediately in a lined trash can, and wash your hands as indicated above.

  • Wipe down a toilet with a disinfecting agent before and after you sit on it.

  • Do not share stationary.

  • Bring your own mugs, plates and utensils to eat out of.

  • Wear gloves when handling money as far as possible.

  • Wipe down your work surface with disinfectant a couple of times throughout the day; this includes landlines and cell phones and intercoms.

  • Make sure your office is well ventilated.

  • If you feel that you have come into contact with the virus, discuss with your employer so that they can initiate appropriate infection control measures in your work place and identify at risk co-workers. Self isolate and call your medical provider.

  • If you start to exhibit symptoms go home and self isolate. Monitor your symptoms, if you are experiencing high fever, new cough and shortness of breath then phone you GP.

  • If you are classified as high risk (diabetes, high blood pressure, HIV, etc) you should work from home.

  • All work that does not need to be conducted in the office should be done remotely with staff using telecommunication such as WhatsApp and Skype for meetings.

Cleaning and maintenance staff are at increased risk of being exposed to the virus. As such, they should take extra precautions; wear gloves, mask, hair nets. They should have access to a place where they can wash their hands and disinfect themselves.

Based on available evidence, children do not appear to be at higher risk for COVID-19 than adult, according to the Centre of disease control and prevention (CDC).

However, they should still take the same steps as adults to protect themselves.

This is a confusing time for children. It is important that you explain to them what is happening locally and globally at a level that is appropriate for their age.
Not attending school, not meeting with friends and peers can be stressful but reassure them that this is temporary are the measures are to keep them safe.

Ministries of Health around the world, such as New Zealand, have recommended the following:

  • Monitor the child mental health and wellbeing. Ensure that they remain active and engaged with school or other educational activities. This should be balanced with time for play. Look out for ”out of character behaviour” such as unusual clinginess or any withdrawn behaviour

  • It is perfectly safe for your child to play outside but limit their contact with children outside your family.

  • Your child will feed off your emotions so make sure you remain calm.

  • Encourage your child to ask questions, and if you don’t have the answer then contact a reliable source to answer their questions.

Much is unknown about transmission of COVID-19 via breast milk. We do not know whether mothers with COVID-19 can transmit the virus via breast milk. However breast milk provides protection against many illnesses. For now the Centre of disease control and prevention (CDC) recommended to continue breastfeeding while taking precautions to avoid spreading the virus to your infant. If you are at high risk, have symptoms, person under investigation and/or with confirmed COVID-19 take steps to avoid spreading the virus to your baby:

  • Wash your hands before touching your baby.

  • Wear a face mask, if possible while feeding at the breast.

  • Wash your hands before touching pump or bottle parts and clean all parts after each use.

The benefits of breast feeding usually outweigh any potential risks of transmission of the virus through breast milk.

We do not currently know if pregnant women are at increased risk of COVID-19, however we do know that pregnant women are at increased risk of developing severe illness with other viral respiratory infections such as influenza. It is always important for pregnant women to protect themselves from illnesses.

Pregnant women should do the same things are the general public to avoid infection and should avoid people who are sick.

Information about the affects COVID 19 on a pregnancy is limited, women who contract the virus seem to deliver early; but the number of these women is too small to make a definitive inference.

If you have any concerns about your child’s health phone your GP.
Make sure as a family you stock up on lots of fresh fruits and vegetables.

...or have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for the virus

This involves a continuous 14 day stint where you limit your movements and contact with other humans.

It is advisable to self isolate if you have travelled to a country with high infection rates, the 14 days starts as soon as you arrive back in Zimbabwe. Just by being on a plane with other travellers puts you at risk of being in contact with the virus, as such we recommend that you act responsibly and self isolate. This will help reduce the spread of the virus.

We self isolate to protect others, as you could either be a carrier of the virus or it could be the early stages of the infection. By minimising human contact you limit the possibility of you spreading the virus.

  • It is advisable to use telecommunication to talk to friends and family and if possible work from home.

  • During the 14 days do not use public transport.

  • Only leave your house if it is essential to do so, such as for food and medicine and you should wear a mask and gloves, and make these tips as breif as possible. If it is possible get someone to deliver these items to your house.

  • It is advisable to stock up enough food to last 14 days, or speak to your friends and family, they can deliver items to you, but it is suggested that they leave the items outside and you collect them.

  • Eat healthily and exercise regularly.

  • It is also important to look after your emotional and mental wellbeing, isolation can be stressful and it is normal to feel lonely, make sure you continue to reach out to your usual support.

  • Try to keep active and stick to your usual routine.

  • If you start to exhibit any symptoms or if you have any questions phone your GP. Do not just go to your GP and sit in the waiting room!!!!

The symptoms to look out for include:

  1. A persistent cough

  2. Shortness of breath

  3. Fatigue

If you live with others they will need to self isolate as well.

What is a carrier?

These are people who either present asymptomatic (no symptoms) or who present with mild symptoms. Research suggests that these people are unknowingly driving the spread of the virus.

This is the main reason why it is essential to self isolate.

Your immune system may be strong enough to cope with the virus, but you may pass the virus on to someone who has a compromised immune system, which means that they will not be able to fight off the virus as easily.

...and at risk of having had exposure to COVID, are symptomatic with or without a confirmed positive test.

Not everyone who tests positive or is a presumptive positive will need serious medical intervention and may be sent home, here are some guidelines for you to follow:

  • Minimise close contact with other. Stay in a specific room and away from other people in your home as much as possible.

  • Minimise close contact with other. Stay in a specific room and away from other people in your home as much as possible.

  • If available you should use a separate bathroom.

  • If a separate room is not available, make a makeshift isolation area using materials that are readily available to you.

  • Do not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, utensils, linen, beds, couches etc.

  • The above should be washed thoroughly with warm soapy water with a strong disinfectant and water and dried before use by others.

  • Clean all ‘high touch’ surfaces everyday. High touch surfaces include counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets, and bedside tables.

  • Also, clean any surfaces that may have blood, stool, or body fluids on them. Use a household cleaning bleach, spray or wipe, according to the label instructions.

  • Labels contain instructions for safe and effective use of the cleaning product including precautions you should take when applying the product, such as wearing gloves and making sure you have good ventilation during use of the product.

  • If you have a medical appointment, call the healthcare provider and let them know that you have or may have COVID-19. This will help the healthcare provider’s office take steps to keep other people from getting infected.

  • Wear a mask or a makeshift mask such as a bandana over your mouth when you exit into common areas in the house. There is no evidence that a homemade bandana may protect others in your home but may have to serve as an alternative the setting of inadequate supply of masks. Where a face shield (that extends to the chin or below) is available use both bandana and face shield.

  • If you are not able to wear a facemask then people who live with you should not be in the same room with you, or they should wear a facemask if they enter your room.

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or handkerchief when you cough or sneeze. Throw used tissues in a lined trash can and immediately wash your hands.

  • Clean your hands often. Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, clean your hands with an alcohol based hand sanitiser that contains at least 60% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • Minimise the time you spend in shared spaces, if possible get someone to prepare your meals for you, but you will have to wash your plate and cutlery yourself.

  • Wipe down toilet seats and taps before and after use.

  • Do not shake dirty laundry, as this can disperse the virus through the air, and try wash clothes as soon as possible.

  • Do not re-wear dirty clothes. Wash your clothes daily.

  • Monitor your symptoms. Seek prompt medical attention if your illness is worsening (e.g., difficulty breathing).

  • Before seeking care, call your healthcare provider and tell them that you have, or are being evaluated for, COVID-19. Put on a facemask before you enter the facility. These steps will help the healthcare provider’s office to keep other people in the office or waiting room from getting infected or exposed.

For individuals with symptoms who are confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19 and are directed to care for themselves at home, discontinue home isolation under the following conditions:

  • At least 3 days (72 hours) have passed since recovery defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever- reducing medications and improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath);AND,

  • At least 7 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.

Individuals with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 who have not had any symptoms may discontinue home isolation when at least 7 days have passed since the date of their first positive COVID-19 diagnostic test and have had no subsequent illness.

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